Do Muslims revere Jesus?
In childhood, most of us accept the faith of our parents. We are born into traditions, ways of believing, and it's not until we are perhaps teens or young adults that we begin to question what we each believe about God, about having faith.
In my case, I was born into a large Catholic family and for the first five years of elementary school, attended a parochial school. It was easy - we lived across the street from it, with the large historic church just four houses down the block. No school bus to board, and my parents didn't need to drive me. I was lucky to be able to go home for lunch most times. I got to see the inside of the nuns' house (I developed a love of calligraphy the minute they showed me their pens and bottles of ink!). A glimpse inside the rectory where the priests lived was equally mysterious to me as a young girl. The elderly lady who was their housekeeper let my sister and me take a peek one afternoon -- how surprised was I to see the living room had normal couches and such! I don't know if I expected gilded chairs or angel wings on the highback seats, but seeing where they lived when not saying Mass normalized for me the nuns and priests. They were "real" people, not illuminated saints.
Around the world, the same viewpoints are repeated. Young children follow their parents' beliefs and likely live in awe, for a time, of the rabbis, imams and yogis who influence them.
The second book for which I am a co-author is titled "Jesus to Jesus." It was published June 2019, and that day hit the Amazon #1 Bestseller lists in a number of categories for the ebook. Later, the paperback was made available. The novel is about the return of Jesus to Earth in modern times. It is quite similar to my first co-authored book, "Return of Christ: The Second Coming," published in April 2019. However, JTJ is about Jesus from the perspective of Islam. It does, however, include quotes from the Bible and also the Torah. It was a whole new way of thinking as I wrote.
I left the Catholic Church officially in 2000 but did not abandon my Christian viewpoint. I joined a Bible-based, non-denominational church. Those childhood perspectives fell by the wayside, though I am grateful for the Catholic foundation I received growing up. As JTJ progressed, I continued to discover more each day.
In being part of the writing team for "Jesus to Jesus," I learned much about the Islamic faith. Some have asked me how, as a Christian, I could write a book that included Islamic beliefs. My reply is that I'd prayed often about the project, and truly felt led in my spirit that I was supposed to be part of the team. The goal of the book is to promote peace and interfaith harmony. How could I profess to also personally want interfaith harmony and not work peacefully with those who brought other faith beliefs to the table? I kept my mind and heart open, while also guarding my faith-filled heart. I felt led by the Holy Spirit as my written words poured onto the page. I was able to include Christian viewpoints and Bible verses in the story, doing my part to influence readers. How can that be wrong? It wasn't.
As for Islam, I learned that those who practice the faith love and revere Jesus. They believe he is the Messiah and born of a virgin. The differences are that Muslims don't believe Jesus was crucified, but they believe he was taken up to heaven and will also return from there one day. I found out that the name of Jesus is mentioned more times in the Qur'an more times than his name is written in the Bible! I learned of the respect for prayer that Muslims have. I sat in a meeting with others involved in this project and heard nothing but respectful words shared among those of different faiths; there was a common goal of healing the world's hate.
I have come a long way since being in awe of Catholicism and the church leaders, because we are to "Love one another," as Jesus said -- both in the Bible and as in the Qur'an. True love for mankind means respect, honor and understanding, in my view. I learned to respect the views of others while sharing my faith beliefs in a kind way. We plant the seeds. God makes them grow. He loves each and every human being.
I ask that you consider buying "Jesus to Jesus" as a Christmas, birthday, anniversary or just-cuz-we-are-friends gift. Or get a copy for yourself. Open your heart to consider how things might be when Jesus returns to Earth with a message of love, defeating the Antichrist in the process, and read how the world reacts to his return. It's an action-packed story not offensive to any of the religions. The book is available through Amazon, Target online, Barnes and Noble online, or from the website, jesustojesus.com And thank you for your purchase!